New prices mean commuters paying nearly £5,000 a year

Raku Fired Clay

Rail passengers could pay almost £5,000 in fares from January with annual season ticket prices set to rise 3.5 per cent.

After a summer of cancellations and timetable chaos, passengers are braced for more bad news when the increased figure is released today [Wednesday].

The price is set to rise alongside inflation. The Times has calculated it will cost £4,806.54 for an annual season ticket from Tunbridge Wells [up from £4,644 this year] and £4,380.12 from Tonbridge [£4,232.00].

These figures keep the towns among the UK’s most expensive places for commuters to London.

For passengers who drive to the station, the announcement means that the combined ticket and parking fares will likely top £6,000.

Currently it costs £1,124.60 a year to park outside Tunbridge Wells station and £1,276 at Tonbridge. It has not been revealed how much car parking tickets will cost for 2019.

Southeastern, the franchise holder for the line, has faced calls to provide greater value for money.

John Reynolds, Chairman of Tonbridge Line Commuters said: ‘This rise was probably expected but it is still disgraceful.

‘The fares are going up more than wages are going up, so a lot of commuters will end up being worst off.

‘There will become a time when these people won’t be able to afford trains, forcing more people onto roads which will cause more congestion and pollution.’

This year’s fares saw an inflation of 3.6 percent which is the biggest increase in five years, in regards to this increase, Mr Reynolds said: ‘Trains have been more frequent, but we should of have had that in the first place.’

When approached by the Times, Southeastern said they had no comment.

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